LIFE of a BOAT tells the history of a 90 year old lifesaving boat in a new book

W&S on acceptance trials in February 1931 by Beken of Cowes. Credit RNLI Archive
W&S on acceptance trials in February 1931 by Beken of Cowes. Credit RNLI Archive

The LIFE of a BOAT is a new book, or as author Graeme Ewens calls it, a ‘Nautobiography’, about of a 90-year-old lifesaver comprising tales of shipwreck, heroic rescue, wartime tragedy and its later resurrection.

Ninety years ago, in February, 1931, the RNLI took charge of a new lifeboat, the W&S, which is still surviving after a heroic career and a longer period of retirement. The publication of its ‘nautobiography’ celebrates the boat’s history and will help finance its life support. A share of proceeds will also be donated to the Penlee Lifeboat Station.

The LIFE of a BOAT is the story of a remarkable boat which served the RNLI for 40 years before entering a new life as a pleasure cruiser. The 45ft 6ins Watson Cabin class boat W&S (ON736) was named after the benefactors Winifred Coode and Capt Sydney Webb. It spent its first three decades at Penlee in Cornwall, responding to more than 100 shouts, often in the most extreme weather and including harrowing wartime conditions, before it was replaced in 1960 by the ill-fated Solomon Browne. Continue reading “LIFE of a BOAT tells the history of a 90 year old lifesaving boat in a new book”

Norman Finlay Memorial Development Scheme launched to discover new talent in the small commercial vessel sector

Norman Finlay MBE receiving his award from Her Majesty The Queen in 2018
Norman Finlay MBE receiving his award from Her Majesty The Queen in 2018

A new scheme has been established that aims to support the development of talent ashore within the small commercial vessel sector. The Norman Finlay Memorial Development Scheme is designed to increase the amount of small commercial vessel seafarers and those with a passion for these types of craft moving onto advanced careers ashore within the sector.

This includes vessel owner/operator organisations as well as within the supply chain such as manufacturers, regulators, surveyors, inspectors, charterers and professional services. The stakeholders will work together to provide a variety of resources towards the development of small commercial sector seafarers.

Continue reading “Norman Finlay Memorial Development Scheme launched to discover new talent in the small commercial vessel sector”

MCA publishes MGN 436 new guidance to mitigate serious injury on small vessels

New guidance on mitigating the risk of serious injury from whole body vibration on small vessels has been published today in MGN 436 (Amendment 2) by the Maritime & Coastguard Agency (MCA).

Whole Body Vibration (WBV) and Repeated Shock (RS) injuries are a known issue of travelling on small vessels at high speeds. When they occur, they can be life-changing or even fatal. MGN 436 (Amendment 2) is aimed at operators of small vessels and focuses on mitigating strategies, following several serious incidents in recent years. It provides guidance on ways to alleviate risk of injury, both severe and chronic, for crew and passengers.

This latest update to the guidance reflects the evolving knowledge and best practice including the use of shock mitigating technology and Continue reading “MCA publishes MGN 436 new guidance to mitigate serious injury on small vessels”

MAIB report into immobilisation and flooding of dredger Shearwater following repeated collisions published

At about 2000 on 9 April 2020, the UK registered dredger Shearwater was immobilised after its propeller shafts were fouled by a towline being used to tow the barge Agem One. The dredger and barge collided with each other repeatedly resulting in Shearwater being holed and flooded, before the towline parted and Agem One drifted away. There was no pollution or injury.

Shearwater had been towing Agem One in an alongside configuration on a coastal passage when a significant swell was encountered. This made the alongside tow untenable, causing Shearwater’s crew to switch to an astern tow. Within minutes of
switching, the 80m towline failed. Shortly after reconnecting the towline, it failed again, and the decision was made to abort the planned Continue reading “MAIB report into immobilisation and flooding of dredger Shearwater following repeated collisions published”

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